Illustration of Paul Baumer in a German army uniform with a red background

All Quiet on the Western Front

by Erich Maria Remarque

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How did Haie Westhus die?

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Haie Westhus dies of an injury to his lung that he sustained in the trenches. After being wounded in the back during battle by some shrapnel or pieces of weaponry, Haie endures significant pain before he dies. His death is poignant for many reasons, perhaps most of all because he was planning to continue his life in the military even after the conclusion of the fighting of World War I. Haie came from a laboring family, so he feels doomed to the lifestyle he already knows; because of this feeling, he preferred the military life over the life of the hard labor of peat-digging. Thanks to his injury, however, Haie was unable to make the choice, as he, like many young men during World War I, lost his life to the violence in the trenches.

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Haie Westhus dies a bloody and painful death in the midst of battle in the trenches.  Paul is with him, and describes his death:

"Haie Westhus drags off with a great wound in his back through which the lung pulses at every breath.  I can only press his hand;  'It's all up, Paul,' he groans and he bites his arm because of the pain" (Chapter 6).

When the battle is over, only thirty-two men remain in Paul's Company.

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